November 16, 2021
How to Create a Social Media App: Step by step guide by Interexy
Table of content
No one will be surprised to hear that social networks have taken over the world. This started many years ago, and still, apps like Instagram, Facebook, and Tinder are some of the most popular platforms among users worldwide. These services became even more in demand after COVID-19 broke out as they cover the most valuable treasures: time and attention. Companies that invest in Social media app development have attracted billions of dollars of investments, just like former ordinary student Mark Zuckerberg joined the top wealthiest people list.
Fast forward to 2019, where there were thousands of social media platforms to choose from, Facebook and Twitter were undoubtful leaders. According to Statista, BIGO LIVE was the top-grossing iPhone social media app in July 2021 that generated over 3.12 million U.S. dollars in revenues only from iOS users. IMVU took second place with roughly 1.72 million U.S. dollars in revenue among U.S. users.
While these numbers are only growing and people tend to use phones to show their lives, chat and discuss, your idea can become the next most popular app worldwide by creating social media platforms now. This guide is a go-to option to get a better understanding of this industry, learning the main features, requirements, and steps you should take to get closer to your goals.
Why consider social media app development?
1. Increased audience reach
The first is that a well-thought-out social network application development can help your brand to get an increased audience reach. The more functional and interactive the platform you have, the better results would be as it ultimately increases the chance people will download and use it.
2. Easy Brand Building
When you have a brand and think why do I need to make a social media app, try to think of your targeted audience. By providing a platform for those who would prefer brands like yours, they can easily come in and discuss. This creates a wide community that will grow itself and therefore builds a strong brand name and authority. While social applications create a more focused and engaged target audience, you also boost customers’ loyalty and become a leader in your domain.
3. Efficient monetization
Popular apps don’t allow you to send any things to the community, but when you create a social media app by yourself, digital marketplace options would be right into your hand. Besides taking money from downloading premium versions, you also open opportunities like one-click and express purchasing. Get money for your items and make it easy for your audience to choose what they want.
4. Your Business Focused
Even though there are many apps that allow companies to work more efficiently, like Slack, there are always distractions like Ads, or after a few months, you have to pay a bunch of money to continue. This is why when you build a social media app, you get your own safe space away from all the noise and disadvantages of busy social media platforms. This helps create a more focused app on your business and then even provides it to other brands in your industry to monetize the business.
Check this social media app features list
1. Personal profile
When you think about how to build social media platform, always start with personal accounts. This is an essential feature of any social app, as it helps users identify themselves and improve the credibility of the content.
You can create a simple profile where users can put a picture, username, and bio, but it is always better to help them put as many details as they want by packing the app with their interests, preferences, location, number of friends, and even recent activity.
Connections mean the opportunity to tap “make a friend” or “follow the user,” which makes your service a real social media app. In most popular apps, users can connect if both approve this action, but it is up to your choice and the app’s expectations.
3. Share user-generated content
The most valuable feature of any social application is to share. Share anything starting from regular texts and photos and ending up with long videos like Instagram updates. Just like we mentioned above, choose whether you want to keep it straightforward or provide users with a vast range of available shared content, which is practice-proven to be more engaging.
4. News feed
If you want to make the app as simple to follow as it is possible, make sure your app has a new field. This feature helps users find information shared by their followers, friends, and groups of interest. You can use simple algorithms or customize the feed. Some famous networks offer personalized content suggestions that have been achieved through machine learning algorithms.
To make your app enjoyable, you should provide the ability to chat and discuss something. This is usually messaging, rating users’ content, or commenting on published content. Creating discussions and allowing users to chat in private will boost their loyalty and retention rate, as social networks if made for attention and discussion.
6. Search and suggestions
By offering these features, you help users to expand their networks and discover groups based on their interests. Try to provide as many variables as possible to ensure a simple and informative search, including name, age, location, interests, and more.
How to build a social media app and not fail?
Cost and Resources
When you want to build a social application by hiring developers and designers, it could be costly and time-consuming. In addition, you have to ensure every team member has relevant experience to ensure compliance with the industry’s requirements. But when you hire a social network app development company, you get much higher expertise, save money and time, as it is usually cheaper and faster than looking and paying for every member.
When entering this market, you have to be ready to face competitors. You should also ensure that your app is different from all others, has a more engaging interface, is simple to use and delivers numerous features.
Only a few monetisation methods
Even though social media applications are one of the most popular ones today alongside food delivery apps, they offer only a few options for monetization. However, statistics show that if your app is gaining popularity and it is powered by many unique features, users will pay for premium versions every time. This means you will earn a great profit from downloading and updating your app by numerous users delighted with what you provide.
Since users will share their personal details on these platforms, you have to ensure everything is secured and manage their privacy. People won’t use a platform that does not guarantee the protection of their personal data. So when developing, put extra effort into ensuring all user’s data is protected, messages are private and encrypted.
One of the main issues in social app development is to promote a platform in the right direction and at the right time to keep users engaging and earn the desired ROI. For these reasons, you will probably need either an SMM manager, creative director, or marketer who knows promotional strategies.
Combining all these challenges, it can be safely said that it would be hard to keep you on the safe side and still gain profit from your app without an experienced team. Reach us out to estimate your project and let us lead you from the very beginning till the launch.
All steps you need to make a social media app
1. Define your Target Audience
The first essential step in any social network development is to perform an in-depth analysis of your target audience. Here you should create a detailed scope of who your prospective users are, why they should use this product, what purpose, and what problem the app will solve? Besides getting a better understanding of your target audience, it will also help craft a great strategy for the development work. Learn your competitors, users’ reviews, what they like and what they don’t like, collect some primary data, and research marketing trends to take the analysis job on a serious level as it is the essential base of your project and the first step to success.
2. UX/UI Design
For some industries, design is not as important as for social networks. It is a complex network application that requires a dedicated team of designers. Once your targeted audience is identified, share the insights with your UX/UI team and ask them to create prototypes. It is essential to choose a highly creative team with a solid background in this niche to ensure the app has an engaging design, is easy to follow, has understandable features, and only valuable content without overflowing features on each screen. This phase turns your idea into reality and gives a kick to the following stages of the development process.
4. Testing & Quality Assurance
When the development process is completed, your app is going to the QA team for unbiased and rigorous testing. At this stage, everything starting from codes, features, and functionality of the social app is checked to make sure each part is working properly, and no errors are affecting the efficiency or user satisfaction. This stage involves various types of testing such as unit, module, and Agile to check the application performance in different purported situations. The quality of the final product is a key factor behind the app’s success and can’t be compromised at all.
Your app is ready; congrats! But what’s next? Depending on the platform you choose for development, it is time to deploy it on the servers and check its actual performance. Whether it will be released to Google Play or AppStore, you will receive user feedback about the network layout, performance, and design. This is also a crucial point that should be missed as this data will help you meet user expectations.
6. Support & Maintenance
The last but not the least stage – support after launching. In case any issue regarding social network performance, functionality, and update arises, your support team has to fix issues as soon as possible. To achieve success and overcome competitors, this reliable support is critical.
Consider Our Company Your Trusted Partner
Interexy is a trusted app development company that always stays informed about the latest trends. This is how we started working with MUSL founders, who asked us to create an application that will meet both business and user needs in the market, where user problems can be solved in different ways for many years.
The MUSL had to provide three different profiles — each in their own community. Friend — find new buddies, Flirt — find a new date, Fun — find a new play partner. To develop this dating app, we started with the implementation of the admin panel to view users on the product, be able to block them as well as perform basic admin panel functionalities. That’s the part we got familiar with the API — MUSL was not written from scratch by our team, we took it over from the other one with no support from them due to the strong disagreeables with the client.
However, we were able to fix all bugs and develop a stable backend of the application within several months of work, while also adding some new functionalities alongside migrating the old database to new AWS instances & setting up admin panels to work properly with the new backend.
The way technologies affect the world we live in changed during the last few years; there are numerous opportunities for investors and companies who want to gain profit and expand their business. People tend to use such services for many purposes, like sharing news, creating personal space, and even boosting the working process in some cases. And if you are one of those who wants to stay in the line of the wealthiest people worldwide, simply get a social network service for your business. Share your ideas and requirements with our team, and let us craft a unique solution based on all your needs.
What Are the Advantages of Social Media App?
Increased audience reach, engagement with the users, low-cost SEO, boosted web traffic, increased content options, and more.
What are the challenges & risks?
The main challenge appears when you hire a team of inexperienced engineers, as it can cause a lot of problems that you will solve later. These include poor data protection, lack of testing, an overflowing interface, and low functionality.
How long does it take to make a social media app?
This always depends on features you include in an app, the number of developers, and the level of their experience with such platforms. But in rough guidelines, it could be something between 3-5 months.